News Roundup: Growing Pains

23 thoughts on “News Roundup: Growing Pains

  1. Ron Thompson January 7, 2022 / 10:59 am

    Regarding the evacuation of 2 lifts at Stevens Pass, it would be interesting to know why the backup couldn’t be used. I’ve been on several lifts when power failed over 51 seasons of skiing and it always gets going again on backup after less than an hour.

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    • ryan January 7, 2022 / 1:50 pm

      I can see 2 possible scenarios right now.. 1- they are unable to get the back up motors started.. it’s happened a few times before at various mountains- the back-up motor starts for the daily/weekly test but when it comes time to try to get it started for an evac, it won’t start. Especially on the older fixed grip lift. Second- If the issue was with a transfer/drive coupling of some sort that transfers power to the bullwheel then that won’t be easily bypassed…

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      • Vail Borg January 7, 2022 / 2:08 pm

        3) They laid off everyone who actually knows how to use the backup system to save right around about like tree.fiddy outa 1.5 billion.

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      • Donald Reif January 7, 2022 / 2:20 pm

        If its the first scenario, well, such is technology for you: doesn’t work when you need it, works when you don’t need it.

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    • pbropetech January 8, 2022 / 8:36 pm

      I’m also interested. Part of my job involves weekly testing of said APU/EPU systems; if they won’t start/run or operate the lift I need to fix them post-haste.

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  2. Jmward January 7, 2022 / 12:49 pm

    Vail actually laid off the backup motors and replaced them with a new app that the main motor can use to help diagnose its own issues.

    Some drive terminals have reported issues with the new app but Vail promises to have those fixed in due time…

    Liked by 2 people

    • Ryan January 7, 2022 / 1:48 pm

      say what!?

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    • Vail Borg January 7, 2022 / 2:06 pm

      All hail the app! Who cares about skiing when you have an Epic app

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  3. Mike B January 7, 2022 / 2:14 pm

    Some modestly interesting nuggets in the fine print of those Waterville and Attitash documents. The new poma at Waterville appears as though it will run up the current line of the Exhibition poma but will extend further up the hill to the merge with Psyched Out and Lower White Caps. Not sure I love that idea b/c you are going to create some new cross-traffic if people are trying to get over to Sel’s Choice and Lower World Cup, but what do I know.

    At Attitash, I found it interesting that despite the “Epic Lift Upgrade” announcement pledging a quad chair to replace the double doubles, Vail is leaving themselves wiggle room by retaining the option of putting a triple there instead. I’m sure that would thrill Attitash skiers who are already overjoyed with the fantastic mountain management Vail has brought to the resort.

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    • Somebody January 7, 2022 / 3:16 pm

      Not looking at the document so don’t know if that triple is planned to be new, but maybe they’ll HSQ on Summit and move the triple over to the double-double. Feels too soon for them to do that though..

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    • carletongebhardt January 8, 2022 / 10:20 am

      The documents, although recently posted, are several months old, so I think Vail’s announced quad at Attitash will move forward. In the document, they mentioned wanting to complete both lifts for the 22-23 season, but it looks like they are holding off on the Summit unless there is a later announcement by Vail.

      WV’s document also indicated completion for the 22-23 season, but Peter confirmed with them that it won’t happen this season, but for the 23-24 season. They also have a fixed grip quad approved that was in the same FS approval as the new six-pack – that is to replace Sunnyside – but no word on when that will happen.

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  4. Somebody January 7, 2022 / 3:21 pm

    Surprised to see Whiteway going D-Line. Only 1,700 feet long. 1.7 minutes feels way too short for a bubble or even a nice D-Line six pack. I’m surprised they wouldn’t have put that in on Westside Six line or Wonderama, since those are 2-3x as long.. Will this be the first D-line on the continent without bubbles? First quad maybe even?

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    • Donald Reif January 7, 2022 / 3:46 pm

      As far as bubble-less D-Lines go, I think Silverlode will beat it to the punch (and if it doesn’t, Silverlode will at least be the first eight-pack to not have bubbles).

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    • Rob Withey January 7, 2022 / 5:01 pm

      Pretty sure the smallest carrier you can get in the D-line is a six.

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      • Powder Hound January 8, 2022 / 6:57 am

        I think it is in the cards for Whiteway replacement to extend further up, past the Wheelhouse Lodge and terminate on or near Wanderer. This would tie into their vision of another base area east of the existing base, with new trails cut downslope of Wanderer. Extending Whiteway will allow for access to that area. This was discussed on a Storm Podcast last year.

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  5. Haydenklev5 January 7, 2022 / 5:20 pm

    The new peaked lift at targhee and disciples 8 will be D-Line without bubbles

    Liked by 2 people

    • Haydenklev5 January 7, 2022 / 5:21 pm

      Both being built this summer

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  6. skier72 January 7, 2022 / 5:37 pm

    Just emailed Lake Louise with an email about their new detachable. Here’s what they responded:

    So it sounds like it’ll be a little while longer until it’s open. From the one Instagram photo they posted, it looked like the towers and terminals are in (not sure about the haul rope), but they still need to hang the chairs.

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  7. 9412vcummins January 9, 2022 / 11:37 am

    Sounds like vail resorts is going into a death spiral….. They took ownership of lots of ski resorts and now they are falling apart, just like the roman empire.

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    • Billuh January 9, 2022 / 3:55 pm

      We can hope!

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      • skitheeast January 10, 2022 / 5:02 pm

        Vail’s demise would be detrimental to the ski industry. Does anyone remember skiing at an ASC resort during their downfall (2001ish onwards)? The best we can hope for is for Vail to learn from their mistakes this year. They have a new CEO, many relatively new resorts, and a lot of talented people (even after firing many individuals with local knowledge).

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  8. skitheeast January 10, 2022 / 5:43 pm

    I have mentioned this prior elsewhere, but I strongly believe that directly replacing the Summit Triple at Attitash with a detachable lift is a bad idea. There are three total trails from the lift’s terminus, only one of which is less than a black diamond. Given that a detachable lift will attract more skiers, many of whom will be intermediates, the top of Upper Saco will be a congested sheet of ice. Putting a detachable lift in the old Top Notch Double alignment would at least split these skiers in two between Saco and Northwest Passage. Wilfred’s Gawm and Humphrey’s Ledge would both be better accessed from a new expansion lift from Stony Brook up to Little Attitash Mountain’s summit (similar to what was proposed in the 90s).

    I feel as though Vail Resorts has a history of not seeing the bigger skier flow picture when installing lifts. There was a good op-ed in the Vail Daily last week about this, how the new Sun Down Express is going in the wrong direction because the High Noon congestion builds as people are trying to move towards China Bowl and Blue Sky Basin. Park City and the Canyons need to be connected? Build a gondola from the already congested Silverlode to the middle of nowhere at Canyons. Mountain House is too congested at Keystone? Upgrade Peru and throw the crowds up the mountain to an already packed lift at Montezuma. Creekside and Big Red are too congested at Whistler? I am sure replacing both lifts in the exact same alignment to continue forcing all Creekside skiers onto Big Red will solve this problem for years to come as skier visitation increases! Sometimes, a simple lift upgrade is the right solution to a congestion problem. However, given that they are trying to sell millions of Epic Passes and rapidly grow skier visitation, they need to think beyond this and figure out how to better spread skiers out. For every Bergman Bowl at Keystone that shows them thinking about spreading skiers out, they announce Eagle Express at Park City that takes the congestion at the main base and dumps it at two of the biggest pinch points at the resort (King Con and Silverlode).

    Liked by 1 person

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